Tour of Peale with Mr. Matson’s PA History Class


Image/Graphics by Photo Courtesy of Carrie Peterson

PA History teacher Mr. Matson with students (L-R) McKayla Steiner, Beth Williams, Billy Bumbarger, Zack Dobo and tour guide, Mr. Caslow in front of the Peale Swimming Pool.

On Saturday, May 4th Mr. Matson took his PA History students to the abandoned mining town of Peale. The trip was able to provide more knowledge on the history and impact the area had on Pennsylvania, and the United States.

Mr. Matson discovered the town in his early years of teaching when two students did a presentation on Peale. Eventually, Mr. Matson began teaching his PA History class about Peale and included coal mining terminology and other research to give his class a better understanding of the town.

The town, located in Grassflat, operated from 1883 to 1913 and was named after Senator S.R Peale of Lock Haven. The area was shut down when the coal reserves “dried up” and much of the population had to leave to find new jobs. Coal from the Moshannon Valley was very valuable and was used to power ships of the United States Navy. The town was previously the second largest in Clearfield County and now has one house left remaining. Although the area is considered to be a ghost town, many foundations, streets, wells, and a swimming pool have survived.

Mr. Matson was given more information on Peale last year from one of his own high school social studies teachers, Mr. David Caslow. He was informed that walking tours of the grounds were available for civic groups, and accepted the invitation to go. This year was the second annual trip for Mr. Matson’s class with four of his students attending.

Hopefully we will be able to continue exploring this well-kept secret.”

— Mr. Matson



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